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A local non profit is making history for kids with autism in Thomasville

Step N' Stones Academy to help kids with autism
Posted at 8:23 PM, Mar 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-22 20:25:51-04

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WTXL) — Step N' Stones Academy is making history in south Georgia.

Brayden and his twin brother Camden started their journey at Step N' Stones therapy services nearly a year ago.

"They can carry on a conversation now," said Desirae Jackson.

Desirae Jackson is the twins' mother.

After finding out they had autism she wanted to make sure they were receiving the attention and treatment they needed.

Through Step N' Stones therapy services her twins were able to get one on one attention.

Now the non profit is expanding and opening Step N' Stones Academy this fall.

This will be the first school for students with autism in South Georgia.

"A lot of what we see in the current education realm is people trying to fit children into a one size fits all box," said Brian Scott.

Brian Scott is a behavior Analyst at Step N' Stones.

"We use the assessments to understand the child and understand there challenges and create an individualized plans," said Brian Scott.

Through assessments and curriculum from the Georgia Department of Education, each child has their own learning plan.

"We know that public school is a very large facility there's a lot there and sometimes the kids just need a little more individualize services," said Shauna Bell.

Shauna Bell moved from Illinois to be the Assistant Clinical Director at Step N' Stones.

She said the one on one classroom attention is crucial for kids on the spectrum.

"Trying to bring the IEP to light," said Tennille Ross.

Tennille Ross works as a nurse there.

She said students with individualized education programs are benefiting from the small classroom interactions.

Ross has a daughter that has autism, so she knows the challenges that children can face.

"I was a parent that did not have those opportunities," said Tennille Ross.

Ross said watching Brayden and Camden develop in a short year, proves that kids on the spectrum need a school designed for them.

Step N' Stones Academy opens August.

They're accepting kids from Pre K to 8th grade.

If you're interested in participating in there fundraiser for Step N' Stones Academy head to Step N' Stones Therapy Services.